Premiering on 6th September, take a look at the trailer!
By Ashima Sethi
Like many other children all over the world, I regularly tuned into Arthur when I was growing up. An animated education television by PBS that runs for children between the ages of 4 and 8, it centres on the lives of Arthur Timothy Read the anthropomorphic aardvark and his friends who live in the American town of Elwood City.
The show first aired in 1996 and has become the longest-running children’s animated television show in US history, which has resulted in a multi-generational fan base and a multi-faceted franchise covering music, games, and toys. The show has won six Emmy awards and featured an array of celebrity guests including Matt Damon and the late Joan Rivers.
The show’s success is also rooted in its history of featuring themes of diversity and inclusion. For example, in 2019 the show revealed that one of their characters, Mr. Ratburn is gay and married to another male character named Patrick. Moreover, every year since the reveal, the show’s creators have invited audiences to wish the happy couple on their wedding anniversary.
Beyond focusing on LGBTQI+ relationships, Arthur has also featured lessons about cancer and terminal illness, racism, activism, disabilities, and bullying. The show also aims to teach its young viewers about tolerance, offering valuable lessons on accepting and celebrating people’s differences and talents.
Although the show is coming to an end next year after a staggering 25 years on air, the creators are releasing a new Arthur movie next month titled Arthur’s First Day! From the trailer, it is shown that one of the new characters in Arthur’s group of friends is a turban-wearing Sikh character complete with his own golden kara.
This has excited the Sikh community worldwide who are happy to see representation on such a celebrated American television show. This news also comes shortly after Disney Pixar revealed that there will be a Sikh character in their upcoming film Turning Red as well (read all the details here).
The film is set to premier on 6th September, but you can watch the trailer below: